The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2005)

Genres - Comedy, Science Fiction  |   Sub-Genres - Sci-Fi Comedy  |   Release Date - Apr 29, 2005 (USA)  |   Run Time - 110 min.  |   Countries - United Kingdom , United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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After several years of production problems with various writers, directors, and several false starts, Douglas Adams' beloved sci-fi comedy The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy has at last been made into a full-blown major motion picture. Unfortunately, it could have used a little more time in the development oven, as the film reeks of being severely undercooked. Part of the reason for the film's long production history could be due to the fact that Adams' side-story-filled novel could never be easily translated into anything close to a traditional film story structure. Just as in the novel, the film drifts along happily and aimlessly while constantly throwing some Monty Python-esque gags at the viewer. Unfortunately, what worked so brilliantly as written words on a page falls painfully flat when translated to film. While the film's first 20 minutes are thoroughly enjoyable and feature some interesting visual moments, the continuous barrage of the film's "look at how funny this is" attitude causes it to cease being witty and just makes it annoying. Actors Martin Freeman, Mos Def, and Sam Rockwell turn in decent performances in the lead roles and appear to be having a good time onscreen, but even their visible enjoyment can not lift this film's sinking core. Even special effects can't help The Hitchhiker's Guide, as it features some moments so visually bland it gives the appearance of resembling a dreaded made-for-cable sci-fi flick. While it can be seen as a fairly decent attempt to bring Adams' vision to the big screen, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy remains a mess of a film and a real letdown for the novel's legion of dedicated fans.